We’re frequently asked, ‘How do I recycle or dispose of my old fireplace?’. So, we’ve popped together a few ideas to help inspire you and save these often beautiful items, from ending up in the landfill.
Whether you’re completely dismantling the entire fireplace and surround, getting rid of an old fire appliance or removing an insert, it is important you do it the right way. The first thing you need to do is establish exactly what it is you need to repurpose or recycle. Are you simply replacing an old insert or appliance with a new one or are you removing the entire surround and hearth too? This will determine exactly what you require to recycle and what you need to do.
Most local authorities run one or more household waste recycling centres where items such as old pieces of furniture, fridges, freezers and yes, even fires can be safely disposed of. We would always recommend that you phone your local household waste recycling centre first to make sure they will take your old fire before you make the journey.
Depending on the age of your fireplace, surround and/or mantlepiece you could sell it to a reclamation company. Google ‘architectural salvage’ in your area to see who’s near you.
If you do decide to sell your fireplace, we advise the following steps before it’s replaced and while it’s still in situ:
- Give it a wipe-down with a dry duster or damp cloth to get rid of any dust or grime. When cleaning your surround or insert do not use cleaning products such as Brasso, these can cause irreparable damage and remove the original finish that is highly sought after in the second-hand market.
- Take plenty of well-lit photos of your fireplace that you can send to the people who might be interested.
Should an architectural salvage expert be interested in your surround or insert you should arrange removal in collaboration with them. They can advise you on the best steps for this as the last thing they want is for you to attempt to remove it and damage it in the process.
You can also choose to sell your fireplace online. Facebook Marketplace, eBay and Gumtree are all obvious choices but there are others available of course.
Another option for disposing of your old fireplace surround or insert is to auction it off. There are plenty of online and High Street auctioneers who would be happy to help you auction off your old fireplace provided it is of genuine sufficient value.
Old mantlepieces can become attractive furnishings in any living space and there are some great ideas around to repurpose them. We’ve got together some top ideas for you to help inspire your fireplace’s next life.
- An old mantel can be used as a blackboard frame, this would go this can look great in an open-plan kitchen area or in a children’s playroom.
- You could use your fire surround as a floor-mounted frame for unusual artefacts found in antique and charity shops. Ideas could be a battered trunk, a birdcage or even an old set of bowling pins. Anything that catches your eye can work as a styling tool so long as it fits in the space. It’s a good idea to take the dimensions of the inside proportions when you’re shopping to make sure you come home with a piece that works.
- Another idea is to use it as a different type of bookshelf fitting the fire space with shelves and stacking books in the area. For even more punch, try brushing a few coats of saturated colour like bright blue on the shelves.
- Old mantels can also make a wonderful frame around a pet’s bed giving you a handy, high-up shelf to store treats and accessories.